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Disappointment ahead of U S Cong turns down N dead: Saran

Written by: Staff
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New Delhi, Apr 8 (UNI) India today said there would be some ''disappointment'' and lowering of expectations if the US Congress did not give the green signal to the civil nuclear energy agreement.

There would be ''some disappointment which could have an impact on Indo-US reactions'' if it (the deal) does not come through, Foreign Secretary Shyam Saran told NDTV.

He, however, appreciated the personal efforts of President George W Bush and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice in putting forward ''very pursuasive'' efforts to see the deal through and said the opinion within the Congress now was very much favourable.

He expressed confidence that eventually, the deal would find support.

In another interview with CNN-IBN, to be telecast tomorrow, the Foreign Secretary admitted that the deal was ''delicately balanced.'' He made it clear that India would not accept any changes or revisions to it.

Asserting that India had preserved all basic positions on nuclear deterrent, he sought to allay any fears about India being vulnerable to any pressure.

''I see no reason why there should be anxieties that we are always vulnerable to pressure,'' he said.

US Assistant Secretary of State Richard Boucher had yesterday asserted that Washington was not contemplating any changes in the July 18 agreement. He, however, asked India to further define the minimum credible deterrent.

Mr Saran also categorically denied that India had compromised its defence or strategic interests whie finalising the deal with the US.

''No, absolutely not. 100 per cent no...it is very important to remember that whatever we have agreed upon is the result of very, very difficult, very tough negotiations. What we have, is an extremely carefully, delicately balanced understanding.

Whatever legislation that is passed must remain within those parameters,'' he added.

UNI RB LR PC1715

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